Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Eco-Friendly Future of Chrysler Cars

One of the latest companies to jump onto the “green” bandwagon, Chrysler and their parent company Fiat have been working together to develop a few new models which will not only get better fuel economy, but will also run on different types of fuels such as compressed natural gas (CNG). Although these are still down the road, Chrysler is already producing a vehicle which many wouldn’t have expected to be considered green or efficient: The Chrysler 300. Chrysler is also working on their first line of fuel-efficient and powerful diesel engines, which will be running under the “EcoDiesel” brand name.
The Chrysler 300: Luxury Sedan Turned Green Machine
In the past, luxury sedans have often been considered gas-guzzlers that were only driven by those who could afford to fuel them. Although this is still often the case, many companies have begun to integrate green and fuel-efficient technologies into their sedans. Chrysler is one of the most prominent of these companies, having just recently released the overhauled and modernized version of the Chrysler 300, their flagship luxury sedan.
The car, however, doesn’t just offer a contemporary departure from previous models: It also offers an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 31 mpg. This, along with a high-performing 3.6L Penstar V6 engine and a 5-star safety rating, has given the Chrysler 300 a place on Roadfly’s list of the 10 Best Green Cars of 2012.
The Chrysler 300 has also earned numerous other awards and distinctions, and was also named one of the 10 Best Family Cars of 2012 by Kelley Blue Book®.
Running on Fumes… Literally! The Natural-Gas Powered Chrysler Ram 2500 CNG
Although it’s still the most widely-used, gasoline isn’t the only fuel source available. In fact, Chrysler and Fiat have joined forces to develop a new pickup truck which will not only deliver nearly 500 pound-feet of torque, but will also have the ability to run entirely on one of the most readily-available fuels in the world: Compressed natural gas (CNG).
For Chrysler’s parent company Fiat, however, this is far from a first. Over the past five years they’ve developed numerous CNG systems for their own cars, and own about 80 percent of Europe’s market share in the industry. In fact, between 1997 and 2011, they sold nearly 500,000 CNG-powered cars!
In contrast to Fiat’s models, however, the Ram 2500 CNG will be a large pickup comparable to the existing Ram. The 18.2-gallon CNG tank located near the front of the frame will give the truck a range of 255 miles; pretty good for a large truck running on a fuel that usually costs about a dollar less per gallon than gasoline!
Although there are 1,500 CNG fueling stations scattered around the United States, the Ram will also feature an eight-gallon gas tank that will give it an extra range of 112 miles. That way, the truck will automatically convert to gasoline whenever CNG tank runs dry.
Unlike many other alternative fuel sources, this one is right around the corner: Chrysler will begin delivery in the summer of 2012.
The Diesel Alternative
Chrysler will also be producing several diesel-powered models under the new “EcoDiesel” line. Jointly developed by Fiat, the models will run on a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 diesel engine delivering 241 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque. As with most diesel engines, the EcoDiesel line will have an excellent fuel economy of 23 mph in the city and 33 mpg on the highway.
Although they will not be released until the 2014 model year, Chrysler has considered shortening the 2013 model year to allow the new line to be released as early as January of 2013.
You Too Can Have New Technology
At Lou Fusz Chysler, Dodge, and Jeep Dealership here in O’Fallon, Missouri, we not only sell the latest fuel-efficient Chrysler 300s, but will also be keeping a close eye on the releases of the Ram 2500 CNG and the EcoDiesel Line so that you too can experience the power and efficiency of green technology!
Guest Post by Wendy C.

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